FORMER ARMY EMPLOYEE SENTENCED TO TWO YEARS
BIRMINGHAM - U.S. District Judge R. David Proctor today sentenced a former government contracting official to two years in prison for giving preferential treatment to defense sub-contractors who gave him money, announced U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance and FBI Special Agent in Charge Patrick Maley.
Judge Proctor also ordered DOUGLAS HARRY ENNIS, 50, of Athens, to serve two years supervised release after completing his prison term and to pay $75,000 in restitution. He ordered ENNIS to report to prison Sept. 8.
ENNIS was employed as the deputy director of the Joint Center for Technology Integration (JCTI) located at the United States Army Space and Missile Defense Command at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville from 1987 to 2008. The Space and Missile Defense Command is responsible for the Army’s research, development and acquisition of systems that may be utilized for defense against ballistic missiles.
“Mr. Ennis was in a position to serve and help protect his country, and he exploited that position of trust for his own financial gain,” Vance said. “He took advantage of his position, and of the American taxpayers as he took payoffs and undermined the competitive process. His punishment is due and deserved.”
ENNIS was deputy director at JCTI while Michael Cantrell was the center’s director. U.S. District Judge Sharon Lovelace Blackburn sentenced Cantrell in December 2009 to five years in prison for his role in the procurement fraud scheme that netted Cantrell $1.6 million in bribes. She ordered Cantrell and other defendants in the case to pay $2.5 million in restitution to the government and entered a $685,060 forfeiture judgment against Cantrell. She also ordered Cantrell to pay $352,145 in back taxes to the Internal Revenue Service.
ENNIS pleaded guilty in 2008 to a conspiracy during which he conspired with Cantrell and others to give preference to sub-contractors and vendors on contracts funded by the space and missile command. The sub-contractors and vendors gave money and gifts to ENNIS and Cantrell. During the course of the conspiracy ENNIS received approximately $70,000 from 2003 through 2004.
ENNIS also pleaded guilty to two counts of making false statements on a financial disclosure form to the Army. As part of his employment with the Army, ENNIS was required to submit a confidential certification form that required him to identify any new interests, sources of income, debts, reportable outside positions and gifts. ENNIS failed to report that he received $4,900 between Oct. 1, 2001, and Sept. 30, 2002.
The case was investigated by FBI special agents, with the cooperation and assistance of Army Space and Missile Defense Command, the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Division-Fraud Team, and the Defense Criminal Investigative Service of the Department of Defense. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Whisonant is prosecuting this matter on behalf of the United States.
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